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DfT report highlights employer benefits of promoting cycling

The research on ‘The Value of Cycling’ has been written by transport planning consultants Phil Jones Associates and the University of Birmingham, and was commissioned to provide a review of the literature on the value of cycling. It focuses on evidence of the wider economic benefits of cycling as a mode of transport, such as retail revenue, employment effects, and public spending efficiencies.

For employers, the research says that:

  • Facilitation of cycling to work leads to lower staff turnover
  • Cycling facilities can overcome difficulties in accessing employment opportunities
  • Cycling reduces absenteeism, boosting productivity: regular cyclists take one less sick day per year

It added: “Cycling has been shown to benefit both the employer and the employee. Aside from its benefits in terms of reducing sickness absences, the role of cycling facilities for attracting staff seems to hold great potential. For the prospective employee, ease of physical access to work opportunities is central to the ability to gain employment and cycling provides a tool by which joblessness due to transport exclusion may be overcome for some social groups.

“Transferring these impacts into benefits that can be included in transport project assessment would seem to be central to reflecting the true nature of cycling’s potential in improving employment prospects and, thereby, helping to lower rates of unemployment.”

In response, Rachel Howard, cycling expert at Cyclescheme – which provides Cycle to Work schemes for UK employers, said: “Many employers are looking for solutions to offer their employees a range of benefits. Through offering the cycle to work scheme, employers of all sizes can save up to 13.8% in National Insurance contributions, encourage your workforce to be healthier, and enhance your reputation as a great employer to attract and retain the best employees. You only need one employee to sign up as an employer to Cyclescheme.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.